Some People Who Like Art

Some people reading this have great personal taste. And by personal taste I mean they have their own identity. They posses an admirable amount of good taste that belongs to them. They didn’t copy my taste or stupidly claim it as their own in an attempt to fool me or to try to be relatable in an accidentally offensive way. No. Instead…they inspired me to watch films I wouldn’t have watched otherwise or consider authors I’d not considered. Not Henry James, Fitzgerald or Waugh of course (or many others) but other genius authors I’d unfortunately rarely heard mentioned over the years. They had and have irreplaceably good taste. They didn’t need to copy my taste and yet I always had hoped they’d have respect for my taste as well, even if it wasn’t their own and they didn’t like it as much. Sometimes they did and sometimes they did not…

But…why would some other people copy my taste? The people I found most obnoxious? …Well, those people probably lack a good sense of self or they are trying to do what’s called “putting on airs”. *smile* They perceived me as admirable and eventually perhaps even “old money” and wanted to give off that impression as well. Or they were trying to steal my taste and use it to better themselves in the eyes of others in general or perhaps they just wanted to hurt me. People can be weird when they’re angry enough and can’t easily handle something about their own experience.

…I’ve discussed it a million times but here’s the definition of old money: “the inherited wealth of established upper-class families” or “a person, family, or lineage possessing inherited wealth”. (Wikipedia) My family (on both sides) has money we gained through investments (Actual well calculated, brilliant investments not just pretend ones. But that really should go without needing to be elaborated or explained and it’s pathetic that people are too stubborn, ignorant and conceited to even truly want to fully understand.) made over a hundred years ago on both sides. Money I’ll inherit and have inherited. Money I’ve used carefully and (hopefully) wisely and that I’ve also (hopefully) used to better other people’s lives as well. Some of those investments paid off handsomely in the last twenty years. Other investments started paying off almost 50 years ago. Other investments were profitable about a hundred years ago. Some people became millionaires in my family when that still meant something. A literal lifetime or two ago now. Some weren’t… *shrug*. Whatever. And there’s some other impressive pieces of family history on both sides I suppose as well. Again, whatever. *shaking head* There are some impressive people who are alive now too.

And…I’ve had to figure a lot of these things out for myself. Some bits and pieces were shared with me by family members but other facts were downplayed or not shared at all. Relabeled. Phrased and packaged overall in a way that gave me the wrong idea, to be honest. I’ve explained this. Most of my family on both sides are incredibly humble and/or very private.

Honestly, I’ve explained too much of this already. So many times. People forget what I’ve told them or maybe misremember it at times too? If it’s too hard to believe it all or understand it? *shrug* I’ll have to let you be confused I guess. I truly can’t and refuse to say more in detail, especially at this point. It’s disgusting that I felt the need to ever say anything to begin with. You shouldn’t have to defend yourself that much. Have your sincerity or authenticity doubted to such an absurd and pathologically bizarre degree just because it scares people. And don’t think I don’t know that it scares them even if I’ve never fully understood why (speaking of things people struggle to fully comprehend). But I am sorry if it’s offended anyone in a way that indicates their actual goodness, sense or better judgement (almost none of my so-called “haters” are likely unfortunately included in that group of individuals).

The thing is…I swear I wouldn’t have shared any of it but for the fact that I truly felt attacked and belittled and picked apart by people who seemed to give off the feeling that they wanted to actually be superior to me or to convince me they were superior regardless of reality. Online. And, after being viciously bullied growing up by (genuinely) well-off, often new-monied jerks who condescendingly told me I “…reminded them of Diane” from Cheers in their kindest moments – “you’re so different” – I really had absolutely no tolerance for people’s rudeness, bullying or passive aggressive nonsense. I tried to ignore people’s ick or be kind for years until I just couldn’t take it. I lost my ability to humor people’s arrogance and conceit.

I’m not heartless. It’s been annoying to have my words misconstrued to mean that I am heartless by people who I wouldn’t think would misunderstand… I do realize that, sadly, some people aren’t as fortunate as others and actually I’ve often wondered if they (the bullies) realize that fully. Do they give to those in greater need than themselves or just use all their funds to look rich? I genuinely hope they give. Still, considering how hateful and manipulative and deceitful some people seem at this point I worry at least a few of my “haters” are too self-preoccupied to care about anyone or anything they can’t use. And what lies are they telling? Perhaps a lot of their quick assumptions and lack of curiosity about the actual truth of others came and comes from their self-awareness of their own lies and pretensions. Their own lack of real concern for others. But I hope not.

Should I go on?

…You know…people really are all different. Some people are gifted with talent that probably edifies their souls. An ability to appreciate true beauty. …And I suppose I shouldn’t be so hard on some other people who have bullied me. There are those who were jealous and then there were those who live lives that are maybe too difficult for me to fully comprehend unless they were honest and self secure enough to explain. And not just lives where they have to wait and sparingly buy Chanel pearl necklaces and suits but lives where they question if one can be truly loved. Not just…them…but anyone. *mirthful laugh* Or maybe they don’t know what love (of any variety) even is… If you do know count yourself unfathomably lucky.

…My samples arrive tomorrow. I guess I’ll write even more then.

A Virtuous Fragrance

In a world where many of the prettiest fragrances are filled with possibly carcinogenic ingredients and it’s strenuous on the environment to produce them I have often asked myself why. Why do I bother collecting perfume? Why is it worth it? Often I come down to an answer of how much personal joy it brings to discover new olfactory gems and wear them. Or I tell myself that by collecting vintages I’m actually preventing waste and loss. Sometimes I reason that if I wear the newer ones with phthalates sparingly at least I’m indulging in moderation. Hopefully safe moderation, that is, of course.

The thing is, life is difficult for everyone. Whatever lies you’ve believed otherwise I hope you realize that truth someday reader if you haven’t already. Of course, some people have harder lives than others. Much more painful. But no one escapes this life unscathed.

On that note, humility is profound and virtuous. Unfortunately, many mistake genuine humility for weakness or material lack nowadays. If you’re not obvious about your blessings in some carefully crafted and at times perversely subversive way people too often assume they don’t exist. Or weirdly, people eventually seem to then decide that they deserve what you have more than you do if they garner some comprehension that your blessings do exist. They attack you in their minds and hearts because they can’t figure out why they can’t just be superior to you, why you rightfully and righteously deserve what you own as they believe they are entitled to be better and enjoy it. They can’t conceive of a world where they aren’t god. Where they don’t get to lord it over others in some way. Some way… (read desperation) People are ugly at times. A lot of people. And they rarely admit to it. Especially to themselves. That would be too challenging to get over. Recognizing their own potential for evil… Too much to handle mentally or emotionally?

But really, it’s more comforting to think your neighbor driving an old pickup truck is doing so because he can’t afford a new and nicer one if you’re insecure. It’s more mature, healthier and more emotionally stable to realize you don’t really know your neighbor’s financial situation. Maybe your neighbor is just smart and doesn’t want to waste his money on something he doesn’t need or doesn’t genuinely want. Maybe he’s just not a fool… But nowadays it’s easier for a lot of people to tell themselves something false and yet comforting that makes the neighbor seem like less of a threat to their ego.

People are offended by evil more openly nowadays and that’s good but they also have less tolerance for somewhat painful but necessary truths we used to be taught to handle from an early age. Namely, some people have more than us. And you can’t just hate people blindly or steal from them in some way or another because it bothers your ego (different than being genuinely in need when it becomes more ethically tricky).

It’s bourgeois to need to prove yourself. But few people understand social class anymore either. Well, it’s bourgeois unless you’re talking to someone who too often makes huge assumptions and would probably never admit to it. Then Heaven help you if people take the “assumption maker’s” badly thought out judgments and prejudices seriously for their own egotistical reasons. They’ll crucify you in some way (particularly in their own head), all stemming from the glimmer of dark-hearted hope they found in the dishonest and self-soothing conclusions someone else drew and then gossiped about secretly? Or maybe just said openly on occasion. They’ll laugh and giggle endlessly behind your back because they believe anything that makes them feel good?

After being harassed by false friends and emboldened open foes you decide you need to explain the obvious for the sake of principle. Perhaps over and over and over. People aren’t receptive. You make a jerk of yourself in the process, of course. But people shouldn’t be that obsessive about your truck. It’s very weird and very gross to have to explain but you might think it’s necessary to defend your honor and to refuse to be bullied. You might even explain in a way that seems funny to you at the time… It’s nice to have a sense of humor about things. And people are supposed to be adults when they’re adults. At least that’s often my naive assumption. Very naive I guess. I am guilty of that.

And, on that note, I’m looking for a new fragrance. I’ll buy Boy and the new Les Exclusifs de Chanel. But I want one more truly new one this year…

So, I bought some samples. And my husband bought a fun lemon fragrance he’ll give me as part of a wedding anniversary gift this summer. Some would approve and others would think because it doesn’t cost over $100 it’s subpar. *shrug*

But no, I’ve given up on it all. I did try in my own silly way to defend myself. To explain. I grew up being taught to value quality and humility over pride. Yet, I tried being more obvious for those who seemingly made assumptions and couldn’t truly even imagine a world they didn’t immediately grasp without being told something new (there are a lot of adults who seem to not like being told things they don’t already know) but…*shrug* I’m over it. There is objective truth. God. There really is. And no one owns it. Wins it. Not really. It just is. And unfortunately if you try to point it out to some people they ignore you or hate you for it. They’d rather just…live in their own world regardless of how it squares with actual reality. Decide your truck was “the best you could do” and if you dare threaten that perception they can’t handle it. They’re volatile. And instead of realizing that and realizing that they deserve actual empathy for their actual pain they would rather maintain a pretty veneer and defend it maliciously. And sometimes they do create a pretty veneer indeed… A lovely one.

I’m not as evil or crazy dears as you would like to imagine in your worst moments. I’m not stupid either. Fat. (my words about needing to lose pregnancy weight were egotistically misconstrued in the past as they often have been) Ignorant. Backward. Lazy. Passive-aggressive. Conniving. Dishonest… Evil… (the top insults people seem to want to throw at me) …Yes, I can be evil (we all can be and I try to be accountable for it) but just because I’m not suffering enough to make you happy doesn’t mean I’m the Devil. And unfortunately if you hate me your thoughts probably revolve around “me” and the world you’ve imagined I live in more than I ever even remotely think of you. And that’s not an insult. Truly. It’s just a fact. …And you know what, because your perspective is so much about you you probably don’t really think of (the real) me much either. So it’s even? Fair? Sort of… We don’t think of each other in reality much at all, I guess. *ironic laugh*

I wish we could have all been real friends. Sincerely. Truly. (How, at this point, do you not get that I’m not lying sweeties? *rolling eyes*) But I guess you misunderstood my truck *shrug* and that just meant too much for all of us in the long run.

More tomorrow.

Rose Geranium

I received my samples of Maison Francis Kurkdjian Oud extrait, Baccarat Rouge 540 extrait, Grand Soir and Lubin Upper Ten For Her (and another one for him). I still have to consider 540… I just can’t figure out if I like it enough for a full bottle or not. It reminds me of in 2005 or so when Dolce & Gabbana Light Blue was very popular and still relatively new. Whenever I smelled it on one of my closest friends at that time I always thought it smelled amazing but I knew it wasn’t for me…

MFK Grand Soir and Oud are definitely not for me. I read so many adoring reviews of Grand Soir but to be honest, with my chemistry it’s very clean, light and yet ordinary smelling. Perhaps if I’d tried it when it was first debuted I’d have felt very differently? Too bad. It’s like baby powder in the drydown. Nice enough though.

Oud smells awful. Like the scent wafting from a Biffy after an outdoor Fourth of July celebration. Terrible. I respect and admire those who wear it with elegance. I am unfortunately and undoubtedly not someone who can. Oh well. *frown*

Lubin is lovely. I love it. Upper Ten For Her is opulent but removed. So extremely pretty. Except my son said, “You smell like a candle.” when I wore it. And he didn’t mean it pejoratively but objectively and honestly. As much as I like candles I don’t necessarily want to smell like one. So, perhaps that’s a no?

*sigh* 540 and Upper Ten For Her may not be for me but then again… I’m going to try them one last time in the fall.

Until then I’m enjoying Floris Rose Geranium a lot. It’s wonderful! Marilyn knew olfactory beauty. It pairs gorgeously with No. 5 eau de cologne. Brilliant Norma Jeane.

And I purchased a vintage 70’s Chanel No. 19 eau de toilette spray that I’ll use. A lot.

More later.

Karen’s Gang (not a repost but a restatement of things I’ve said many times)

Online in the perfume community there are literally thousands of people who love to walk up to you virtually and say metaphorically, “Look! I have ten pencils! TEN! And they’re all more amazing than your pencils. Therefore, I’m more amazing than you.” *sigh* “If only you had more pencils. Better pencils. I’d respect you more. Be nicer to you.” …But then if you do indeed buy ten excellent pencils they just hate you even more. Or they try to find something wrong with your pencils… You could have the most amazing pencils in the world and they’d still be infinitely condescending about your pencils.

To make those people angry (because they’re obnoxious) I decided years ago to give them a taste of their own medicine and point out that based on the social structure (of most modern societies) they were using to badger and bully people (including myself) I was a higher rank than them regardless of pencils. But a Karen and her pals (of all sorts of people) can’t believe a family descended from Norwegian immigrants and who owned (and still own) Upper Midwestern farms can be old money even though Hitler himself claimed Scandinavians were the ultimate race. *laugh* Karen and her pals only use historical references (or references in general) when it suits them not based on actual context or history. They don’t know that much about their own country and its variety among other things.

So, when I shared about my family to be irritating the dozens of Karens and their pals focused instead on the part of my mother’s father’s family who were Lords in England hundreds of years ago and eventually lived in the American South. I’ve written about them fairly recently. …I had originally only briefly mentioned that family because everyone other than them were my actual focus but people (Karens) zeroed in on the English side instead and thought they were my “claim to old money”.

In people’s passive aggressive attacks that’s the old money they felt the need to attack. My English ancestry… But again, that’s the only kind of “old money” or “blue blood” the Karens and their pals know about or can even slightly understand. …And, of course, the pencil game came into play and they had to pretend they had a similar background, better background or that there was something wrong with me, my account of things or that however amazingly fascinating and impressive the family of English origin is and was that it doesn’t matter anyway. Backgrounds of old money (at least three generations of a certain social status and amount of genuine affluence that is often inherited) became “stupid” in their perspective if they couldn’t win that way. …But also, Karens live in Karenworld where only what they saw on 90210 when they were 17 really matters.

These are the “Karens” though. And Karen’s pals, of course. Notoriously, if you’re black and well-off the best they can do is make a mental comparison to the The Cosby Show. Although…the overwhelming scandal with Bill Cosby ruined that cultural reference now too I guess. So…they think of Beyoncé and Oprah? But it’s easier to diminish entertainers in general or focus on Oprah’s weight than it was to diminish Dr. Cosby. He almost broke through to them and actually helped bring change. He understood them. He could explain who people actually were and are in a way that worked.

But I don’t want to ruin it. Calling people Karen only works in terms of the Karen’s perspective if it has a sort of humorous cachet. It has to seem cool to them and if I discuss the concept of a “Karen” too much it’ll seem questionable to those Karens reading this. Not because people discredit families with an individual who received the same award as Liv Ullmann (that’s the most obvious “impressive thing” to point out to Karens about my Norwegian background but they often have no idea who Liv Ullmann is to begin with or fully understand what you’re trying to describe regardless) but because they don’t want to comprehend. And I think that’s mostly because don’t like who they are.

I tend to think racism goes hand in hand with issues of class. And oftentimes when we think of “issues of class” we think of people who are middle class and struggling… Or people who are actually poor. But I think it goes beyond that. I think people discarded honest conversations about class decades ago almost everywhere and that in my country our whole identity rests on lies about class. We’ve spread those lies along with our honorable good intentions and brave freedoms around the world. Of course, I should hasten to clarify that the genuine truth we were trying to spread (and did) was…good. Oftentimes faith and reason based. Intellectually and fundamentally sound and decent. But you can’t ignore or pretend the problems of reality don’t exist and then expect the problems to go away if you “try hard enough”. Americans have always tried to do that and it doesn’t work for race and it doesn’t work for class.

Karen knows a lot. She knows that she’s an aging white woman with old pop cultural references she often finds occasion to use. That she’s overweight herself despite calling Michelle Obama a cow. That her hairstyle is outdated. That she’s a bully who tells everyone to turn down their music if it scares her or makes her feel insecure. A liar. A hateful person in general. A truly angry person. But…what is she really supposed to do about it?! Life is harsh. Often life is unfair for everyone.

A Karen will never be the cute, platinum blond Stacy or impossibly cool, raven haired Jennifer she grew up with who were popular in her high school class in the 70’s, 80’s or 90’s. Stacy was a Jenny Garth lookalike. But those days are over.

She can “hate on” privileged (but hard working) Norwegians because that seems more justified and excusable given our gifts and race. Or she can call pretty women in general ugly. Younger people losers. But that’s not satisfying enough. That’s a dead end. No, what feels better to a Karen is to take out her frustrations on black folk. Not her dark skinned “pals” who she may or may not be actual friends with but the others… And I think part of that is that they embody the perceived death, change and parts of herself a Karen fears most.

Again, Karen can never be the cute cheerleader with long blond hair and blue eyes named Stacy who was popular in her high school. A total Jenny Garth lookalike. All the guys wanted her. All the girls wanted to be her. BUT a Karen is often more privileged than a black person. And Karen wants to be cool. She wants acceptance. From society… And mostly from herself.

Should we feel empathy for Karen? Yes. But they can be genuinely evil too (often arrogant about their ignorance) and so one has to be aware. Careful not to become a Karen. Careful not to believe their lies. Careful to take their anger seriously but not personally. It’s never about anyone but them, although it’s important to objectively and honestly process what they’re saying without ego as much as possible to avoid being like them. (Although not to an unsafe degree) Careful to find ways to not let them attack the vulnerable, or those who they perceive as vulnerable. Some “Stacys” are actually black…

540

I’ve tried Baccarat Rouge 540. I’ve tried other Maison Francis Kurkdjian fragrances. I’ve generally not been a true fan. I’ve appreciated the artistry and beauty but they just weren’t my style. I’ve not fancied them.

However, my family and I recently stayed at a beautiful hotel that was very contemporary. I think the hotel opened just literally a couple of years ago. And, the moment I opened the door and walked into our room I was hit by the smell of either Baccarat Rouge 540 or something that smelled almost exactly like it. I had such a positive visceral reaction and I was pleasantly surprised.

Suddenly the lighting in the room felt particularly chic and the other up-to-the-minute stylings came fully alive. In the past 540 didn’t fully introduce itself to me, but I now see 540 a little differently… Maison Francis Kurkdjian Baccarat Rouge 540 is an optimistic fragrance. It’s a fragrance of today in an upper-middle class, “I’m not worried! My 401(K) is awesome, my kids and I eat exclusively gourmet vegan, I live in the posh suburb and my garage is the size of (and probably nicer than) an average American house.” sort of prosperous, shrewd cheer.

Matter-of-fact I even ordered samples from Luckyscent just to fully renegotiate my feelings about MFK. I also reordered a Lubin to reinvestigate that one as well.

The thing is, MFK is very popular and while that’s certainly for a legitimate reason it’s also difficult to spend over $300 or so for perfume that feels luxurious…but is also somewhat ubiquitous. I would spend more than that for an equally recognizable and classic luxury handbag but I’m less interested in a bottle of perfume that is indeed very “now” but simultaneously also one that you might smell whenever you go anywhere nice… *shrug* I don’t know… I’m sampling MFK Grand Soir and Oud as well. Maybe one of those will be a more likely buy. Or not. But regardless, after smelling a 540 clone the other day in the cooled air of our sleek and stylish room I need a reassessment.

Too Late

From The Atlantic

There was an excellent article in The Atlantic today (I’ve displayed a screenshot of it above), but it got me thinking about my family. There are some parts of history that aren’t entirely explained nowadays, at best. But if truth is truth you can’t ignore facts. Truth doesn’t suffer even if you’re scared it weakens your own limited argument.

On my mother’s father’s side of the family we came from England in the 1730’s to Virginia. Over the next 130 years we were wealthy plantation owners with many slaves. I know from historical accounts from the time that my relatives were part of a sizable minority of slave owners who were genuinely humane, or as humane as you can make an inherently evil institution. Indeed, however sizable we were a minority even though well respected families like mine were touted as the norm.

They used good truly people as their cover. People who weren’t afraid of abolitionism. In fact, some of my ancestors were abolitionists and freed all their slaves. That was our family though… And we were unusual, despite what was claimed otherwise.

Regardless, slavery was an evil institution and no matter how wild it must have seemed to my ancestors to consider the way of life they had had for over 130 years totally dissolving it was bound to happen. And maybe, aside from their personal losses (not of slaves but of other resources) and the fear that their families would be killed they would have even welcomed the war in a way… They were decent people who lived in very different times. That’s not to be confused with lacking honor, intelligence or awareness. Quite the opposite.

My relatives (also descendants of the plantation owners) who live in the South now aren’t more racist than the next person who genuinely doesn’t consider themselves racist. We’re ashamed to have been a part of such a huge, profoundly foolish and evil institution. But good people can make ugliness less ugly and that’s both a blessing and a curse. Sometimes our good intentions blind us to the evil that is really out there, including the evil we may be contributing to. We start to think things, “aren’t really that bad”. But the evil of our own time is often more insidious than most of us arrogantly want to assume. It’s easy to self-righteously judge others but a lot harder to hold yourself accountable in an honest and productive way. The evils of our own time aren’t often openly discussed or discussed well.

What are you a part of that “isn’t that bad”? A “necessary evil” even. It’s scary isn’t it?

Let’s be better? And when it comes to something as obvious as treating darker skinned people with respect and as equals let’s hope society can finally get it right… 160 years too late.

Floris

Well…my Floris samples arrived in the mail and I’m still testing the samples but I will say that the Moisturizing Bath & Shower Gel was very nice. It left the prettiest amount of Soulle Ámbar scent behind as well, which on my skin is an elegant, resinous and yet refined amber. I’m not an amber connoisseur however (although I would consider myself a fragrance connoisseur in general at this point) and there may be other amber bath products that are better. I can say though that of the many bath products (not just this scent obviously) I’ve used over the years that this is one of my favorites so far. I have yet to try their bath oil but if it’s anything near the quality of this product then I can see why Marilyn Monroe bought tons of it. Floris bath produces may be really just that good…

Now about the fragrances…

My initial thoughts (I might write a more extensive review later): Edwardian Bouquet is extremely memorable. It’s pungent and not for the faint of heart. Herbal. Almost pretty. Very emotive. It’s likely an acquired olfactory taste, so to speak.

1927 is juicy. Very warm and fruity. Lots of depth. Loud. Both modern and yet reminiscent of actual 1920’s fragrances. However, I like the start more than the drydown.

Then there’s Limes. It starts off very similar to my vintage Jean Naté to be brutally honest, except with more lime than lemon… Like an expert g&t with lime. Refreshing. Delightful. …But then it fades until it disappears. It’s just…gone. *sigh* It doesn’t even last an hour on my skin, actually. Too bad…

Fleur is nice. It reminds me a lot of a combination of vintage Jessica McClintock and Guerlain Champs-Élysées. Nice. Pretty. *shrug* A very classic lighthearted floral.

…So. I’ll likely not buy any of those fragrances in a full bottle. They’re nice but not quite something I’d want a full bottle of. I might try more Floris bath products, however. And regardless, the quality of Floris is obvious in everything I sampled.

Perfumes as People

Aerin Lauder

Yesterday I was looking through a mailer from Saks when I happened across a paper sample for Aerin Rose De Grasse (I swear those are serviceable.). But I’m sure you’ve heard of the Aerin line by now? It’s Aerin as in Aerin Lauder. She’s a descendent of the great Estée Lauder.

Anyway, in her line of fragrances there’s a perfume called Rose De Grasse. It’s a favorite among a certain set of well coiffed, well heeled women in their 40’s and 50’s. The type of ladies who have truly professional Instagram pages where they post perfectly lit photos of opulent pink peonies in blue and white porcelain vases. Peonies that they’ve just cut from their extensive gardens. The sort who wear pairs of Tory Burch sandals in rotation with the same fervent insouciance that American Millennials wore Old Navy flip flops during their teen years. Palm Beach ladies.

However, I was hoping for a different type of rose. Maybe something closer to the rose note in the Aerin line of moisturizers and etc. But no. It’s…not an English rose at all in Rose De Grasse. It’s American? French? Hmm… Again, at least a little Palm Beach.

The rose of Rose De Grasse is beautifully pampered and polished. Yet it’s also fruity. And very sexy too actually, but only in the most opaque, sweet tea and white marble flooring kind of way. Sort of country clubber, “Oh darn! I left my favorite nail file in our silver Caddy and I hate this valet. *sigh* I guess I’ll just have to finish this Kir Royal with a chipped nail.” *sigh*

I find those ladies fascinating. And we might run into each other in a Lilly Pulitzer but I’m not quite one of their tribe (and never have been or will be).

No… I do have a few samples from Floris in the mail though? Hopefully they’ll arrive soon. Maybe I’ll find something new to admire then. I recently tried Gabrielle Intense (Is that the right name? *rolling eyes* Whatever.) and Platinum Egoiste as they were the complimentary samples from Chanel with a recent order. *shrug* I liked the original Gabrielle. And I’m not actually one to wear so-called “men’s scents” so, for me, it’s not worth reviewing them more. We’ll see what happens with Floris.

Yesterday I did also watch “Niagara” though. And along with her glossy fuchsia lipstick I imagine Marilyn as Mrs. Rose Loomis wearing her Floris Rose Geranium on set. Very pretty. Very determined. And in “Niagara” also very dangerous. I suspect nowadays the actual Marilyn would also wear Frederic Malle, Annick Goutal or maybe even Aerin Lauder. Or perhaps it’s impossible to separate “Marilyn” from Rose Geranium and Chanel No. 5 Eau de Cologne.

I’m curious to smell Floris.

Marilyn Monroe as Rose Loomis

(Images via Google Images)

Zelda Rides Again

I’ve had a realization in the last few days about just how intensely jealous a lot of my “haters” actually are… And I mean that quite objectively.

The “haters” I accidentally gathered with my first popular and well-loved account on Instagram, that is. I have a new public and intentionally low-key account on Instagram and while I do share perfume it’s not my focus. But anyway, I’m sure some genuinely jealous person somewhere still wants to paint what eventually happened with my first account (I deleted it out of hurt, frustration and a concern for my safety) as a scenario of me either being “crazy” and/or “lying” or they desperately cling to any other scrap of nonsense they can conjure to make themselves feel superior. And you’d think they would have lost interest by now, but the jealousy was serious and very sincere I guess. *rolling eyes* It lingered. And lingered. …It lingers.

Actually though, 99% of the insults they tried to fling at me (and they still do) never did stick. My “haters” tend to project a bit too much of their own issues onto other people to truly figure out any real insults that “work”. They make up some “voodoo doll” version of me in their heads who doesn’t exist and then insult that person.

I took down almost any post on this blog people could find obviously unsympathetic to their “hate”. And, if a person calls what I wrote in those posts crazy now they’re just taking a cheap (and dishonest) shot. (Someone truly insane will start plotting to hack this blog now.)

Maybe in truth though it all just went over their heads? Perhaps they don’t understand how people could figure things about themselves out with proper historical documentation. They don’t understand what historical documentation even is? (probably) Or…they don’t understand or want to understand class. Wealth? Maybe they don’t want to understand anything in a real way because they’re too stubbornly jealous? Too self-righteous? *shrug* Or maybe they did understand my original frustration years ago (and etc.) but they didn’t feel like being sorry for being obnoxious (and jealous and destructive) and decided to double-down and attack instead. They were too embarrassed to feel bad for being so genuinely offensive. So vain and rude. So crass. Such a bully.

Thing is, unfortunately none of that makes me crazy kiddos. Instead it makes my “haters” mostly self-promoting assholes who don’t want someone to be “better than them”. And that makes them the one with the problem. Again, their egotistical anger and bullying (openly and passively) in the fragrance community online is the reason I lost my temper and started sharing things that I knew would make people feel insecure. I wanted to make them so upset they just blew up and went away. (Another reason they may linger, ironically.) …I’ve explained this all many times. I’ve said that I got sick of trying to be nice and bite my tongue when people were emotionally and psychologically abusive. …I was exasperated by the fact that people felt entitled to harass me everyday in their delusional zero-sum game. And if being more honest than is socially acceptable and not trying to coddle people’s egos is crazy then count me in?

Hmm. Will some “hater” start a forced (power-trip) private conversation to tell me about their child’s constipation and ask for advice about loosening their bowel movements? Will they then share something gross and too personal about their genitalia (without my encouragement of course)? Maybe. I mean, that actually happened. That was seemingly one “hater’s” idea of retribution. They decided to be “honest” too I guess. *rolling eyes* Well, that was their method until they cooked yet another narcissistic scheme up.

…But how about, since my “haters” keep reading, I just make it clear: I don’t take you seriously. You may have “loved” me once *rolling eyes* but in truth it was a farce. Wasn’t it? A temporary lull before they all found something too uncomfortable for their egos and felt the need to attack? “I think you’re really cool.” “I love you!” they’d say for a few months before feeling too angsty.

Right. Sure.

For The Dogs

“I love watching fathers play with their kids.” he said as we walked around a lake. I pleasantly agreed but probably missed his point.

Later after our hellish walk around the lake concluded he made an ass of himself at his apartment by going on and on about some woman’s breasts. She was about to get implants and his words were both lustful and filled with scorn for her. His friends looked at him open-mouthed and aghast and then looked at me with awkward and sympathetic smiles, clearly intensely uncomfortable with the turn in conversation. But I was mostly just very perplexed.

Regardless, he did seem to be in a nasty mood. Intent on being crass and as hurtful and objectionable as he could muster. Perhaps he also hoped to score a few points with his friends if he could? You know, impress them by saying lots of cool “guy stuff”. Big fake boobs and all that jazz. Guy stuff.

Who knows…

…But then came the moment of truth.

Sitting in the car as he drove me home for the last time in a genuinely rational and calm attempt to understand him better I asked in foolish but sincere curiosity, “Do you really like big breasts? Is that what you’re looking for physically in a girlfriend?”

He straightened himself up in his seat and became icy. Then in a very angry, frustrated and hurt tone of voice he yelled back at me, “No!” And so while I couldn’t figure out what he meant by everything he had said earlier about implants, I assumed he was just trying to reject me one way or another… I tried not to take it personally. Even make conversation pleasant again maybe?

“Tic Tok” by Kesha came on the radio. “Oh!” He said in disgust and turned the station quickly. “I hate that song!” he said. “Don’t you?”

“Yeah.” I answered trying to be agreeable as he still seemed upset. Truth be told though, I found it fun. I still do. But I had the sense he felt it was too rowdy and low-brow and I really didn’t want to make him nastier. I let it go.

And then (I’m leaving out the rest of that night because it mostly just went on that way) came the text two weeks later after I finally asked him out (he’d been the one asking for dates), “I don’t think we have any chemistry.” …Except we did.

In response I very politely disagreed and tried to suggest we could be friends if he wanted. Plantonic friends. I was really trying to be understanding. Ha!

Was it the calf hair leopard print flats I wore on a date to the movies that were stinky from being worn out in the rain? Was it the way I wore my hair? I changed it halfway through our quick relationship. Doubtful.

I think what’s most likely is that we misunderstood each other. Over and over and over again. Until no matter how lovely our chemistry actually may have been…nothing could be done.

I think I was supposed to get angry. Jealous. Confrontational. Except, I’m not a passive aggressive person and not being in that mindset at all, his maneuverings went over my head. I’m also not a jealous person. To an unusual degree.

But I loved his ability to feel deeply. If only he’d had the maturity and kindness needed to open up just enough to honestly clue me in. Genuinely confront me about his real concerns. Maybe? I obviously wanted to know. And of course I’m responsible for lacking the maturity, wisdom and romantic experience to realize that he may have been hurting more than he felt he could openly show.

“Do you like women with large breasts then?” His answer in my ideal world should have perhaps been, “Well, I mean they’re objectively attractive because they’re breasts, but no. That’s not my type. I was saying that to piss you off.” That would have left me speechless in the best way and perhaps he could have then told me what was really bothering him… He might not have guessed my response. I wish he’d been braver. I wish I’d been more perceptive. Taken his compliments more seriously…

But perhaps he was right, in a way, after all. We did have chemistry…but he didn’t “see me”. See my heart. If you can sense someone’s presence but your mind decides, for whatever reason, that they aren’t there the chemistry doesn’t matter anymore. It’s unrequited.

And in the end…what we deny the existence of matters. And our choices become our fate.